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Pain Physician. 2017 Feb;20(2):69-76.

Percutaneous Vertebroplasty for Symptomatic Schmorl's Nodes: 11 Cases with Long-term Follow-up and a Literature Review.

Author information

1
Department of Radiology, Zhong-da Hospital, Medical School, Southeast University, Nanjing 210009, China.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Percutaneous vertebroplasty (PVP) is commonly used to treat symptomatic vertebral compression fractures. However, its long-term effectiveness and safety for use in the treatment of symptomatic Schmorl's nodes (SNs) refractory to conservative treatment is uncertain.

OBJECTIVES:

To present a case series with PVP for symptomatic SNs not responding to conservative therapy and assess the effectiveness and safety for such treatment with long-term follow-up. To present a review of the literature regarding SNs and treatment options.

STUDY DESIGN:

Single center retrospective observational study.

SETTING:

This study consists of patients from a large academic center in China.

METHODS:

Between January 2008 and December 2013, 11 patients suffering from symptomatic SNs that were refractory to medical or physical therapy, underwent PVP procedures in our department. All patients had a definitive diagnosis of SNs by magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and computed tomography (CT). The visual analog scale (VAS) was assessed preoperatively at 4 hours, at one month, and every 6 months postoperatively during the long-term (mean: 58.0 months) follow-up period.

RESULTS:

Each of the 11 patients reported an immediate and distinct relief of their back pain. No one reported a worsening of symptoms. The VAS decreased from an average preprocedural score of 7.9 to a postprocedural score of 2.1 at 4 hours. The VAS averaged 1.8 during the mean follow-up period of 58.0 (range 24.1 to 98.9) months. There were no postoperative complications during the follow-up period. At the end of the follow-up period, all 11 patients were unrestricted in their activities.

LIMITATIONS:

This study is a retrospective study with a small sample size.

CONCLUSIONS:

PVP is an effective and safe procedure for the treatment of symptomatic SNs, which are refractory to medical or physical therapy.Key words: Percutaneous vertebroplasty, symptomatic Schmorl's nodes, vertebral endplate fracture, endplate osteonecrosis, Modic changes.

PMID:
28158154
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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